Tuesday, January 15, 2008

John Edwards' -- Actually -- Minimal Minimum Wage Proposal

LBJ's, 1968, minimum wage was $9.50/hr, adjusted for inflation -- at 50% (!) of today's per capita income no less (productivity doubles every 40 years).

Edwards', (promised) 2012, minimum wage of $9.50/hr, adjusted for likely inflation should be worth 15+% less: or about $8/hr -- a big fifty cents more than Eisenhower's, 1956, minimum wage which was $7.50/hr, adjusted for inflation -- at 40% (!) of today's per capita income no less.

Just to give the latter per capita income some perspective: at 40% of today's average income our house used to eat many varieties of macaroni for dinner, along with hamburger helper -- not because we were so poor, but because that was the level people lived at then.

It cause all of 3.5% to the cost of GDP output -- and add the same 3.5% to direct inflation -- to jump the minimum wage all the way from $5.15/hr to $12.50/hr -- spread over a couple or three years as you please.

Dick Nixon, jumped the minimum wage from $6.50/hr (it fallen far back, as it so often does) to $8.50/hr, in today's money, in one shot.

The scheduled Democrat minimum wage raise projected to reach all of $7.25/hr, by 2009, may actually lowball Eisenhower's minimum wage by .50/hr, by the time inflation takes its toll.

What more can I say?

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